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Road trips can be great fun because you have the freedom to stop wherever you want or take detours on your whim. Having the company of your canine friend can make things even more exciting. But it also means a great deal of responsibility because you would want the animal to be safe and comfortable through the trip. Here are some guidelines that you can follow to travel safely and easily with a furry companion in tow.
Plan the timing and route
First things first, you should plan the timing and route of the trip to make sure that it is convenient for you and your pet. Choose an ideal time according to the weather because you wouldn’t want to do too much to keep the pet warm or cold. Plan the route while keeping regular breaks in mind because the dog would need to relieve itself from time to time to stay comfortable and happy. Stopping every few hours is important to let it move around.
Pack a bag for the dog
Being on the road with a pet is as good as traveling with kids, so you must pack a separate bag with all it may need or want on the way. The basic checklist should include its food and food bowl, water and water bottle, protective clothing, blanket and dog towel, leash toys, brush and shampoo, poop bags and flea comb and a tick remover. Do not forget the regular medications and dog-safe sunscreen and insect repellent.
Know your pet
Pet parents should know their pets well enough to understand how well they can adapt to long road journeys. If you have a nomadic lifestyle, it is a good idea to do some research even before buying a dog so that you pick only a travel-friendly breed. You may Google search with Perfect Dog For Me to get a fair idea. Alternatively, you can seek some expert advice. List everything about the animal’s habits and preferences so that you can prepare accordingly.
Contact your vet
If the animal regular check up is scheduled or it has a health issue, you must take it to the vet before leaving. Ensure that it is up-to-date for vaccinations and also ask the vet if it required any additional ones for being safe and healthy along the way or at your destination. Get a prescription for any extra medicines that you may need and carry a copy of the pet’s medical records in case you need to see a vet at the destination.
Book pet-friendly accommodations
While you may do a lot to keep things safe and easy en-route, do not overlook the comfort of your dog at the destination. Look for a pet-friendly accommodation option on the internet and find out about their pet policies even before you leave. You may find that some hotels and campsites do not allow pets while others have breed restrictions and rules that you will have to follow while you are there. So it is best to have a good place to stay when you reach there.
Finally, be prepared for emergencies, particularly if you are taking the dog along for the first time. You can expect car sickness, so feed the animal a few hours in advance and carry the essentials like newspapers and medicines. With a bit of work, you can make the trip safe and enjoyable.